Premier SHC: Barrs and Charleville both off the mark but with some regrets

North Cork men come from four points down to salvage draw
Premier SHC: Barrs and Charleville both off the mark but with some regrets

St Finbarr's Ben O'Connor clears his lines as Charleville's Andrew Cagney closes in during their Co-op SuperStores Cork Premier SHC clash at Mallow on Friday. Picture: David Keane

Draws can be funny – while each team leaves with the same amount, generally one team is happier than the other.

On Friday night in Mallow, Charleville eradicated what was a four-point deficit in the final quarter to deny St Finbarr’s victory. While pleased to have salvaged something, though, manager Mark Foley acknowledged that his team didn’t always make things easy.

“The team that would be unhappy is the one that was leading,” he said.

“Obviously, St Finbarr’s were a point or two ahead but we would feel that we had chances, too – or maybe that unforced errors caused us a lot of harm on the scoreboard.

“We had settled well after the half-time break and got a good few scores.

“We gave away the ball for a goal, gave away the ball for a point straight after that and gave away the ball out the around the middle third for the second goal.

“That was an issue for us throughout the game, so we have to brush up on that.

“We got those bodyblows but we reacted in a positive way and kept coming. In the last ten minutes then, they showed good character, which was the main positive.”

It means that Charleville will go into next weekend’s clash with Sarsfields, who lost to Blackrock, a point ahead of their opponents, but Foley is expecting to be underdogs again.

“Yeah, sure I suppose that’s another game we’ll be given no chance in!” he laughed.

“We were 3-1 outsiders today and it’ll be similar next weekend. In fairness, Sars were very impressive during the league, they’ve a huge panel of players and a few brought in from other clubs this year.

“It’ll be a big challenge but one we’ll embrace.”

Foley’s opposite number, Barrs manager Ger Cunningham, knew his team could have won but he was phlegmatic.

“We said it inside, any time you come down to play a championship match and you don’t win it, you’re obviously disappointed,” he said.

“We’ve been missing players during the year with inter-county and we’re a dual senior club with a lot of fellas playing football as well. It’s a massive challenge and we knew that tonight would be a difficult situation as we didn’t have the work done.

“Our club is being asked to play six matches in five weeks, with a huge amount of dual players. Five or six of our guys played a senior football match last Sunday night and then we had to play Friday night.

“It’s not sour grapes in any way, shape or form but a couple of days in this situation could have made a difference. It’s something that could be considered going forward.

“Charleville are a good side and they’ve improved massively from last year, we probably caught them last year in the first match and people were comparing that match whereas they went on to show against Blackrock and Erin’s Own that they’re a good side.

“We came down looking for two points, we’re going home with one.”

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